2018 in review: Top 10 Buncombe economic accomplishments, by Kit Cramer

Kit Cramer, president & CEO of the Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce
  1. After 20 years, the funding for revamping all three sections of the Interstate 26 Connector project was secured. As key infrastructure for the entire region, improvements will pay long-term dividends in shortened commutes, improved efficiency in moving freight and a safer travel experience.
  2. The Haywood County and Asheville chambers formed a partnership that allows Buncombe economic developers to represent Haywood in business recruitment, reinforcing our regional economy and actively addressing the urban/rural divide.
  3. Existing employer GE Aviation announced a $105 million expansion, creating 131 new positions that will pay nearly 30 percent above the county average and generate $12.8 million in annual labor income and $7.5 million in new taxes.
  4. A 10-county State of the Workforce survey provided data on employment needs throughout the area. Insights gained will help guide regional solutions and help inform statewide policy.
  5. Buncombe County endorsed the importance of early childhood education in workforce development by committing $3.6 million per year to the cause.
  6. The first Venture 15 awards were presented to the 15 fastest-growing Asheville-area startup companies, hoped to ground the next generation of Asheville-headquartered companies.
  7. Auto parts manufacturer Reich announced an expansion of its Arden facility, with a $10.9 million investment in new equipment and 15 new positions that pay 40 percent above the county average.
  8. Recognizing our role as the state’s leader in record low unemployment, NEXT AVL creates a nine-month professional mentorship program targeting first-generation college students.
  9. Custom HVAC manufacturer Haakon Industries announced a new $19.6 million operation in Enka Commerce Park. With 160 new jobs in its first five years of operation, the company breaks ground in 2019.
  10. As a basis for economic strategic planning, AVL Greater is seeking a common vision for Asheville’s future across a wide cross section of the community’s businesses and not-for-profits.

Kit Cramer is president & CEO of the Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce.










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11 thoughts on “2018 in review: Top 10 Buncombe economic accomplishments, by Kit Cramer

  1. Jane

    It’s not at all surprising that the Mountain Xpress is giving free positive spin PR to the official mayor Esther Manheimer and the unofficial mayor Kit Cramer. Both, Manheimer and Cramer have sold the city/county out for their own personal enrichment while simultaneously padding the Xpress’ advertising revenues. Win win for everyone but the citizens.

    • Enlightened Enigma

      Why do you want to turn this into something racist? We don’t care.

      • OzarksRazor

        “We don’t care.” “Dieversity!” etc…
        I care.
        My kids care.
        Their Dad cares.
        Their grandparents care.
        Our neighbours care.
        Our friends care.
        Is there a chance you could give me a bit of history or insight of your anti~diversity stance?
        From what little I have read of your comments, it generally appears as thinly veiled racism… but I don’t want to make any assumptions.
        I really am curious.
        Thanks in advance for your time.

        • Enlightened Enigma

          sorry , but you and your ‘sphere’ don’t have a right not to be offended… merely mocking the overhyped over dramatized ‘thing’ called diversity. sick of it here, as are many others. diversity is the antithesis of unity.

          Im guessing your children probably attend elitist city government screwls, right?

          • OzarksRazor

            Immediate defense mode- Check
            Double negatives- Check
            Lack of useful punctuation- Check
            Assumptions- Check
            The ever overused “as are many others” instead of taking ownership- Check

            Thanks for taking the time to reply though. It appears I’ve somehow missed your attempts at satire.
            My multiracial children go to the local public schools (just like I did growing up here) since their working~poor, white Mum works M-F and they aren’t yet mature enough to home-school on their own.

            PS: I was looking for real dialogue but since it sounds as if there is none to be had I won’t call you out in the future. Peace out, yo.

    • Allen Brasington

      Isn’t membership open to everyone? I am very sure Mr. Canio Costanzo would be glad to sign you up as a member. I personally know several African-American members who are active in the Chamber.

  2. Jim Reeves

    #11 Democrats in power enriching themselves at public expense while holding office.

  3. OzarksRazor

    As an aside, I find it deeply disturbing that Kit Cramer and the Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce still support Jonas Gerard in nauseatingly public ways.
    Interesting developments over at the Asheville Regional Airport in the past 24-36 hours.
    If ya’ll want to pretend to #WomenUp, it would be wise to disassociate with Asheville’s most famous known sexual predator.

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